“So, what are you up to these days?”
It’s a question celebrated chef, restauranteur, and social advocate Suzanne Barr has dodged for years.
But the reason isn’t that she hasn’t been busy.
Whether making guest appearances on Top Chef Canada; or speaking at international symposiums to promote women in the culinary industry, Barr has never stopped moving, never stopped growing.
But she knows when people ask that question what they really want to know is, “When are you going to re-open Saturday Dinette?”
Saturday Dinette was a much-loved local hotspot on Toronto’s east side that was forced to close its doors mid-2017 (long story). It was a place of community and comfort, where Barr and her husband/business partner Johnnie Karas operated a modern diner that not only curated a mouthwatering menu based on their respective international roots but created an indisputably memorable atmosphere that had a dedicated clientele return again and again.
Barr and Karas have long-wanted to recreate that feeling of connection with their customers. But how?
Enter True True.
Serving unique pizzas in an undeniably Instagrammable space, True True has quietly gained a dedicated following at its stylish King and Jarvis location. Local lunch crowds pack the restaurant, the casual but upscale atmosphere matching the menu to a ’T’.
True True has seen success, yet proprietor Andrew Hay wanted to offer his customers a more memorable — a more where-everybody-knows-your-name — experience. But how?
Hello, Suzanne. Hello, Johnnie.
Discussions began in quiet corners under the dark of night. Ideas on napkins. Hand gestures describing vibe. Texts whenever inspiration hit.
A good restaurant is only partly about the food — but it’s entirely about feeling.
A local hangout. A place to have a coffee in the morning, or a glass of wine with a meal in the evening.
For brunch. For dinner. For a date. Doesn’t matter.
As long as you feel just as good walking in the door as you do walking out.
And so, a collaboration ensued. True True joins forces with Chef Suzanne Barr to pair the casual comfort of a local café with the culinary exploration of Italy and beyond.
Grease meets gravitas. Welcome to True True Italian Diner.
169 King Street East
Toronto, ON M5A 1J4